In Which I Take One For the Team

Henry and I have this little routine every night.

He has this new thing where he wants to fall asleep in our bed every night.  In Daddy’s spot.  He is well aware that Daddy will move him when he comes to bed, but he just likes to “sleep in a big bed”.

Because I’m a grandma and go to bed early, and Andy is a bit of a nightowl, Henry and I have a new tradition.  We spend the last half hour of the day reading quietly beside each other.

I’m usually on my Kindle, and he has a stack of books on the nightstand that he flips through.  Last night, it was a selection of a National Geographic book on insects, the lifecycle of a frog, and rockets.  If that isn’t a perfect illustration of my boy’s interests and personality, I don’t know what is.  All he needed was a Haynes Owner’s Manual for a Land Cruiserand he’d be golden.  (I’m totally not kidding.)

I often peek over to see his little lips moving quietly…silently “reading” pages.

It’s a sweet moment, and fast becoming one of my favorite times of the day.  I love my boy.  He makes me happy.  Ohmygoodness.  So happy.

The other day, my new Pioneer Woman Cookbookcame in the mail.  I was ecstatic…but very careful to not leaf through the pages too much.  No, I wanted to save it.  Really enjoy it.  So, I put it on the shelf and waited somewhat patiently until bedtime when I could really sit undisturbed and in quiet to see what deliciousness its pages contained.

Do you do this too?  You know, wait for quiet time to allow yourself to look at a book when you can really savor it?

Am I the only one who does this with cookbooks?  Possibly.  Because I read my cookbooks.  As in, cover to cover…like they are novels.  In bed and everything.

Is that weird?  Don’t answer that.

Anyway, flipping through P Dub’s book, Henry looked over and with a grin:

“Tell me when I can push the screen…”

“Womp, womp, womp.  You’re a funny guy…I know, I’m not on my Kindle tonight.  It happens.”

“Mommy, what kind of a book is that?”

“It’s a cookbook.”

“What does it do?”

“It shows mommy how to make different foods.  All of the recipes are in here and tell me how much of stuff to use and how to do it.”

He peers over.

“So, girls can’t make this one?”

Huh?  What?”

“Girls can’t make this recipe then.  It’s for boys…”

“What?  Why can’t girls make this recipe?”

I was SO confused.

“Because it has corn, Mommy.  And that goes on the BBQ and girls don’t know how to BBQ, so only boys can do that one..”


At first, I bristled.  I opened my mouth to launch into a full on girls-can-do-what-boys-can-do tirade of equality and opportunity…

and then I snapped my big mouth shut.

“Yes.  Yes, Henry.  BBQing is a boy job.  You remember that when you have a wife someday.  You do the BBQing in the summertime.  That’s absolutely right.”

“And I’ll make all the corn.”

“Yes, yes you will.”

You’re welcome Future Daughter In Law.  Don’t ever say I did nothing for you.

I don’t know about you guys, but I love me some summertime.  We eat many of our meals off the grill, and you know what that means?

Mama gets a four month break from cooking. 

And it is a beautiful, beautiful thing.

As far as the kids are concerned, Mommy doesn’t know how to BBQ.  Which is sort of true since I have never done it.  I would imagine I could figure it out, since I can cook inside the house…but let’s not muddy the waters here.

This is about those sweet evenings where I make a couple of quick side dishes and then sit at the kitchen bar (which is still yellow, bee tee dub) and chat and hang out and watch as my husband rushes around marinading, trimming, and seasoning.

Incidentally, he is now a master griller.  Husband can grill up a mean steak, get tri-tip to perfection, and sear an ear of corn like a pro.  It’s like I have my own personal Bobby Flay…only way cuter.


Before you get your feathers all ruffled about the whole girl/boy job thing…I just want you to know that I’m totally okay with it.  Andy kills spiders, takes out the trash, fills our gas tanks, picks up dog poop, mows the lawn, and does all the grilling.

Basically, let’s be serious, this isn’t about boy vs. girl…it’s really about “This is a list of things Jeannett doesn’t want to do.”  If you want to take out leaking bags of trash and scoop up dog turds, then by all means.

But as for me and my house, this is good.  So so good.



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I'm a mom to four. A wife to one. I believe in story. I love telling you about mine and would love to hear yours. There's really no sense in wasting our suffering and not sharing in each other's joy. We're all in this together...even if it doesn't always feel like it.

Latest posts by jeannett (see all)


  1. 1

    Good for you! I totally agree with you there are boy jobs and girl jobs and good for you for teaching your son that.

  2. 2

    I totally agree! I am all for teaching our kids that they can do anything they want to do (regardless of gender) but I love having my man take care of me – including cooking on the grill, gassing up the car, killing bugs and the like. :-)
    Lois H.´s last blog post ..Project Life Tuesday 3.27.12

  3. 3

    This post made me smile. Yes, I do read cookbooks cover-to-cover like they are novels. I get ecstatic when I get a cookbook for Christmas or my birthday.

    The boy should have to kill the bug . . . and pump the gas. These 2 things are non-negotiable.

    I don’t mind to grill but love that even though my husband never lifts a finger when it comes to cooking, he has somehow claimed the role of griller in our house. Before he met me, he didn’t even have a grill. I bought the first grill and then all of a sudden his inner cave man came out and he thought he should be the one turning the meat over the fire. That’s ok, I’m good with that, too!
    April´s last blog post ..And, Just Like That . . .

  4. 4

    I love it!! Sounds just like my hubby!! I call it “being pampered”. ;) and I love it!! Good going, Mom!

  5. 5

    I love this and I enjoy reading my cookbooks too. I don’t grill either. I have no doubt that I could but the last time I “tried” the darn ribs caught fire and had to be put out with a fire extinguisher. I also don’t cut the grass. The one time my husband pressured me into it he didn’t like my work. Apparently you’re supposed to mow in one direction. Walking back and forth is way too boring for me. I like a little artistic flair to my grass.

  6. 8

    I’m totally with you, girl! I love that we can use those boy/girl things to speak life and encouragement into our kids, too. Ya know, that whole “you CAN do it, because you were created to enjoy doing that” thing. And I totally wait for quiet time to savor magazines, books, and {dare I say it} even my coupon mailers. Yep, I’m super cool like that.
    Kat´s last blog post ..favorite finds & random thoughts

  7. 9

    Haha you are too funny! I love reading cookbooks too.
    Pam´s last blog post ..Hello Monday

  8. 10
    karen y. says:

    This is a great post! Grilling is a boy job in our house as well. There was this time that I tried, many many years ago. And the house almost caught fire! I left it at that. Let him think I can’t do it! Same reason as you – cook a couple of sides and relax while he does the rest. :-) We call my husband the Grill Meister here because like your husband, he is really great at it. Perfect steaks, burgers, chicken, you name it. Like you, I’m sure I could figure it out, but I will never try!
    I also set aside a special time to read new cookbooks, magazines and my favorite catalogs. You’re not weird. :-)

  9. 11

    Ok I have to ask…I have NEVER put corn on the grill…or had corn on the grill. But it sounds SOOOO Good! How do you do it?
    Kelly´s last blog post ..Dancing with his "Choc Choc"

  10. 13

    I hear ya! We have girl jobs and boy jobs here, too, and taking out the garbage is definitely a boy job.

    So, quick question: If hubby can grill, why can’t he cook indoors the rest of the year, too? :) LOL. We share cooking duties here (my husband’s actually the more experienced cook) and that includes grilling. I can grill, but I admit that I tend to over- or under-cook stuff or char the crap outta the outside while the insides are still raw. Oops!

    It’s cute that your son thinks only boys can grill — LOL at your comment to your future daughter-in-law. Some day he’ll figure out that women can do everything men can do — with you as his mom, how can he not? :)
    Kelly @ Creating a Family Home´s last blog post ..Pinned It, Did It #2: Sewn Dolly & New Sewing Machine

    • 14

      Just like I can probably figure out grilling, he can likely figure out cooking inside. The thing is, I really don’t mind cooking and typically enjoy it…but I really love the days we BBQ…

  11. 15


  12. 16

    I do… I wait until I have a quiet moment to read my letters so that I can savor every word and reread them at least twice!
    Kate @ Songs Kate Sang´s last blog post ..Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious..

  13. 17
    Lisa sharp says:

    Ahahahaha! I am normally a lurker and don’t comment (I know, very bad manners), but this was just so funny I had to let you know that I got a really good chuckle. Your perspective is sooo perfect…these are things we are totally capable of doing, we just choose not to…LOVE IT!!! By the way, bestof luck with the new baby, such wonderful news :) Lisa

  14. 18
    Lisa sharp says:

    Oh and about the trash, one day my 4 year old saw me pulling the trash bag out of the can in the kitchen and she looked at me with a very perplexed face and said, “mommy why are you doing the trash? That’s daddy’s job” I laughed and called my hubs (who was away on business, hence the reason I was emptying the garbage and not just shoving it down as far as I possibly could) he got a good chuckle from it to.

  15. 19

    Frank can learn a lesson or two from Andy…hmmm…I think he will need to go over more often! LOL

  16. 20

    This is so awesome, words can’t even describe it. Yes, I read my cookbooks (and magazines, which I’m addicted to and obsessed with) the exact same way! In my home, grilling is a boys’ job too. And I love that you’re helping your future daughter-in-law already. You’re hilarious! And awesome! The end. :-)

  17. 21

    Hysterical! I can see my sons saying this one day. My hubby rarely lets me run the grill even though I really enjoy grilling! He finally gave in the year he was deployed since he had no choice. I was looking at the Pioneer Woman’s cookbook at Books a Million today. It looks great! It’s on my list of ones to buy soon.

  18. 22

    so miiiiiight just have started tearing up. oh man, I pray that if I have a son, I can PAUSE for those 2 seconds to realize the right thing to say in that moment. I know the same applies to my daughter, but man, I just want to teach my sons [hopefully someday?] how to treat the women around them right.

    love this post, Jeanett. thank you!

    Kacia´s last blog post ..New Mom Thoughts | Vol. II

  19. 23

    You are genius… just genius!

    I am one of those women who only survives by the fact that Daddy grills all summer. You have just earned your spot in the Mommy Hall of Fame :)
    Rachel´s last blog post ..Bikini Bingo Bust


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